Cape Town – home to stunning beaches, scenery and the famous Table Mountain. Over a million people flock to Cape Town annually, and their sheer love for the city is enough to show the need to visit this powerhouse at least once.
What I expected to be a visit filled with lazy days on the beach was quickly filled with me soaring through the air more than once.
It’s not often that you find so many adventurous activities in one city, so I’m going to put you on.
If you’re an adventure lover like myself, Cape Town will easily become your playground. Do one of these experiences and make your time memorable!
Cape Town is undoubtedly beautiful, but it is even more appealing from above. Trust me.
I took a tour with Cape Town Helicopters and the experience was phenomenal. I embarked on the Atlantico Scenic route, a 20-minute journey which flies you over the Atlantic coast. The pilot pointed out the famous spots along the way, including Cape Town Stadium, Table Mountain and Camps Bay.
By the time my feet touched the ground, I wanted to hop back in for another ride. The ride was surprisingly free of dips and bumps, so if you feel uneasy about flying like myself, you’ll be fine.
Tip: Watch the weather forecast and book a tour for when it will be clear and sunny. You won’t be disappointed. I’ll let the pictures speak for itself:
Even though the helipad base is a short walk from the heart of the Waterfront, Cape Town Helicopters has a free shuttle to drop you off at the V&A Waterfront.
Here’s a fun fact: the highest commercial bungee jump operates in South Africa!
I get it. You may be wincing at the thought of bungee jumping, but I’m personally considering it. And if you’re going to jump, you might as well go hard or go home right?
Bloukrans Bridge is 216m high and a 7 hour drive from Cape Town. A number of companies offer a package where transport, one-night accommodation and the jump is all included. Look online or wait until you arrive in Cape Town; my accommodation had a few companies that they were willing to call for me when I was considering jumping.
If you don’t feel like jumping, you can actually walk up to the arch of the bridge before stopping. Public tours are arranged for this to take place.
Table Mountain is the perfect opportunity for hikers to be at one with nature and view a beautiful view upon reaching the top.
There are various routes with varying degrees of difficulty. Skeleton George is a strenuous hike that will take you 5 hours to the top! If you want a simpler route, Platteklip Gorge is better suited for you and will take 3 hours. You can pay for a guided hike, but if you’re sociable just hike alone. You’ll people along the way who can easily guide you should you get lost.
I often believed that there were only two ways to reach the of Table Mountain: take the cable car or hike. But did you know that you can rock climb too?
Now friend, while my job is to inform you of all of your options… I don’t know if I condone rock climbing Table Mountain. I NEARLY FAINTED when I saw Tim and Becky rock climbing with (what it seemed to be) no safety equipment.
Please remember you are in Africa, folks. Your South African aunties and uncles will be waiting at the top ready to rebuke.
Tip: aim to reach the peak an hour before sunset. Your pictures will be fire.
Lion’s Head (the front mountain in the picture above) is the little sister of table mountain, but with a trait that Table Mountain cannot surpass: you get to see Table Mountain from Lion’s head. Table Mountain is the attraction that everyone signifies with Cape Town, so Lion’s Head is the perfect instagrammable spot.
The hike will take you 1.5 hours to reach to the top, so if you are time strapped in Cape Town, hike Lion’s Head and take the cable car for Table Mountain.
Tip: Word on the street is that sunrise is the best time to visit, but please remember that means you will be hiking in the dark to reach the peak for sunrise. Try to find someone to accompany you if possible.
With some of the world’s best surfing spots at your disposal all year round, it’s almost a no brainer to surf in Cape Town – unless you are like me and can’t swim. In that case, skip to the next activity.
If you can swim (go you!), Muizenberg is a popular choice for a few reasons:
1) it’s a great surfing spot for beginners
2) The are a number of restaurants in the vicinity
3) You’re killing two birds with one stone – you get to see the famous beach huts!
Once you view the pristine waters that meets the coast of Cape Town, you’ll be dying to get close to it by any means possible. If you can’t/won’t surf, kayaking is a more pleasant way to spend your day and you’ll view seals in the process.
If you want to complete two activities at once, opt for kayaking in Simon’s town, where you can pass by Boulder’s beach and see the penguins!
I completed a charity skydive to raise money for the Innocence Project while I was in Cape Town, and it was essential to find a safe, reputable company who would make sure I stayed alive to tell the tale. While many cities have skydiving facilities, not all cities have the benefit of having a breathtaking view on the way down. A beach view was crucial, and that’s where Skydive Cape Town shines.
Located 30 minutes away from the city centre, I was picked up by a driver and taken to the skydiving grounds. After signing my life away on a waiver, I met the man that I was going to trust my life with, I mean the Tandem Master, put on the safety harness, was loaded into a small helicopter and we took off.
Once you are flying at 9000 feet, you’re quickly strapped up to your tandem instructor, reminded of the instructions and next thing you know, you’re freefalling through the air.
Don’t let anyone’s – including my own – video fool you: skydiving is not for the faint hearted. I don’t easily feel challenged by adventurous activities, but I’d never been so happy to be on solid ground. However, the release of endorphins keeps you on a high all day. Take a look my experience below.
If you want to strengthen your relationship with God, go skydiving. You’ll pray more times in 30 minutes than you have in your entire life.
Have I missed anything on this list? Comment below!
Thank you to Cape Town Helicopters for collaborating with Melanin Travel for the Atlantico Scenic tour. All views are our own – we’ll always keep it real!